First Landlord Advert
In 2008 Timothy Taylor celebrated its 150th Anniversary. It is another notable milestone
for a company that has been transformed from a small family brewery serving the
town of Keighley and surrounding area into a forward thinking business supplying
traditional English ales nationwide. This is something Timothy Taylor himself could
never have envisaged when he first started brewing in a small brewery in Cook Lane
in 1858 – nor could he have imagined his company would be brewing a nationally renowned
beer, Landlord, a brew described as the 'champagne of ales' by the world famous
Quality has always been at the heart of Timothy Taylor's philosophy. John Taylor,
grandson of Timothy, despite his inherent fiscal principles, never compromised on
quality. 'Quality of product and service coupled with strict financial disciplines'
was his formula for success. When it came to purchasing brewing ingredients only
the best would do and money was never stinted. It is a policy that has been maintained
by a distinguished line of head brewers throughout the company's history and one
that is continued today by Peter Eells and his brewing team. It was the financial
reserves accrued by John Taylor during his time as Chairman and Managing Director,
between 1955 and 1995, that laid the foundations for the company's growth over the
last ten years. That growth, on the back of the quality of the company's beers,
not least best selling Landlord, has seen major developments at Knowle Spring Brewery.
In 2000, with the brewery running at capacity, a new fermentation house was commissioned
and three multipurpose fermenting, maturation and storage vessels, were installed.
This was quickly followed in 2001 with the addition of a new malt silo and conveyor
system, and a second mill in 2002.
The next phase in 2003 cost more than £2.5 million and saw the installation of four
more identical fermenters plus a temperature controlled store and automated racking
and palletiser system. This redevelopment continues today with the site currently
undergoing a vital facelift to expand distribution facilities and provide larger
Dropping the copper into the hop back
The company is also passionate about upholding the traditions of the English pub.
Ever since Timothy Taylor bought his first pub, the Volunteers in Keighley in 1859,
Taylors have maintained a small tied estate. Today the brewery owns 29 pubs in West
and North Yorkshire as well as across the border in East Lancashire. They range
from town centre taverns and community locals to wayside inns and isolated country
Between 1998 and 2008, over twelve million pounds was invested in an extensive programme of refurbishment and purchases to improve the pub estate. Our pubs have clear identity and heritage and are committed to offering the best service, hospitality and, of course, serving the finest quality beers. In addition, most of them serve excellent home-cooked food.
Pulling a pint of Celebration Ale
During the 150th anniversary year, a number of events were held to celebrate the company’s success. At the beginning of the year, there was a ‘mashing-in’ of a special, one-off brew, Celebration Ale. Described as a ‘strong, Yorkshire, Amber Ale, with a rich golden colour, robust hoppy aroma and full malty taste; this beer was available in draught at selected pubs during February 2008. It proved so popular that by mid-March it had all been sold. Indeed, at one London pub, The Bricklayers Arms in Putney, a 9 gallon cask was downed by thirsty drinkers within 45 minutes of going on sale!
Alongside Celebration Ale, Havercake was reintroduced. This beer was originally brewed in 2002, to celebrate 300 years of the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment. Soldiers of this famous regiment were known as ‘The Havercake Lads’ after the oat pancakes that were the staple diet in the Pennine towns from where the regiment was recruited. Like Celebration Ale, Havercake also quickly ran out.
Despite the many problems facing the brewing industry at the end of the first decade of the 21st Century, Timothy Taylor’s is confident about the future. Investment continues to be made, to ensure that future generations will enjoy drinking our Beers, brewed in the traditional way, for many years to come.